My first step towards learning and making my own art started more than two years ago. I just completed my MBA, had a job in hand and ample time to join it. In those 3-4 months of practical blankness and the feeling that no pressure existed, I started doing art.
It was "heaven"...I didn't join a class, I was broke back then (my first salary was due) and I knew the power of internet, so I just started off with pictures and videos and whatever self-help was available online.
It wasn't bad at all... rather it is great!! I posted pictures of my work... and was very surprised on the responses... Like a normal human being, I questioned my ability and shrugged off the compliments thinking that my friends were being too extravagant.
A new milestone of my life just began... I left my job and joined a professional course to understand Art and respect it more now. I respect that it’s no piece of cake, it’s hard work... I respect all those who are involved in it, and their work. I do not take it as competition at all. I take it as a form of meditation, which we all are doing. I take it, as a path God has destined for us to follow... for “me” to follow.
What made you become an artist?
Something always drew me to “that” particular section at a stationary shop. But I never paid any heed until then. I took up as a hobby, learning myself. I realised it was serious for me, the deeper I indulged in it. It was, when I made my first illustration painting. It wasn’t from a book/picture or internet, it just came out. I stood there… not able to understand what just happened. It took me a long time to accept that this is the path I’m meant to be on, I took up a professional course to understand if I was serious or if it were some short term passion. When I did, I gave up my job to take it up on full time basis.
Please explain your process of art creation.
Well, I started out directly with Oil. Someone said, if you draw using a brush, you’d have better control and beauty. I’ve observed I love drawing pictures that have “emotions”. Whether it be a guitar (to show my love for music), or “The Lady” (standing waiting for her lover to come back) and others. All this is Oil on canvas/canvas paper/canvas board. After one point I was stuck, on what to paint, hence the professional course. There I learnt to draw and sketch, which came out quiet naturally. Since then, I draw “Still Life” everyday. I may not paint but I draw. I draw to improve myself. I draw human figures while on the go, in a metro.
What genre of music do you listen to while painting?
That depends upon my mood. Its only the starting song that matters, later I totally and absolutely become unaware of what’s playing and what’s not. I guess, that’s the power of doing something you love. Time flies!!
How do you become inspired when uninspired?
I cannot wait for inspiration to pop. I believe it is an everyday process that makes you who you are. Whether its 30 minutes or 3 hours, one must put in a minimum time each and every day.
What other activities do you have besides art?
I love cooking (another form of art), dancing (hip-hop, jazz, bollywood dancing), getting involved in different crafts and shopping.
Name your most recent creation.
Do you have a favourite painting?
As stated before, it was my illustration painting (I call it “Waterfall of dreams”), which I created myself. Though I had the right mood then, I want to be able to make more such stuff without such inspiration. I do not want to depend on anything for inspiration.
What is the artist’s role in society?
An artist helps the society to imagine beyond practicalities of the World. It helps them get out of other people’s dogma. It helps them dream, those dreams which turn to realities. An artist inspires people and the society in every emotion.
Have you sold any of your paintings thus far?
I haven’t sold any artwork through private exhibitions (I’m not that confident yet). But I have sold 2-3 by organising exhibitions at home. That was a small affair. I would start putting up my work very soon in the coming year.
How have you been promoting artwork on the internet?
Influences from other Artists
During the last 1-2 years, I’ve come across many “self taught” artists. And I’m truly inspired by the kind of work they are doing. It feels amazing. The way they’ve experimented and come out is something which drives me as well. I would like to be in touch with more such people and love reading about other Artist’s journeys.
Please relate something interesting from your life.
I’ve always had an Artistic bend of mind. One of the most memorable incidences if from my Engagement party, which took place at my home. I controlled the whole decoration aspect of it, (making a few things myself). We were like working the whole night, as the dawn set the next day, it was as if someone had transformed the place. That feeling of being able to achieve something and so beautiful, was unbelievable. I’ve never done something like this, so you can imagine my excitement, when someone at the party asked us, if we got a “wedding planner” to do our house.
10 years from now – Where will you be as an artist?
10 years is a very short span for me. I think, I’ll be still at a very nascent stage. But, I would have definitely enjoyed the journey of these 10 years. I believe that its not the destination, but the journey that matters. I also think that I would have travelled across to meet different artists, learned with them, worked with them, while at the same time enjoying my marriage and kids
Any advice for emerging artists?
You MUST love what you do and do what you love, else don’t get into it. And respect what others are doing, you may not understand it at first, but the effort and hard work put in there should not be judged. Painting advice, huh! I’m not sure if I should, you see I’m myself an emerging artist.
Niharika Garg - India Art – Journey of a Budding Artist
Website: Niharika Art Studio